Child Injury Project in Ethiopia
A large proportion of injury deaths in Ethiopia occur among children. It is estimated that of the 68,948 total injury deaths in 2012, 13,002 deaths were among children under 5 years and 9,267 among children 5-14 years old. It is therefore important for stakeholders to pay attention and take immediate actions to address the burden of injuries among children in Ethiopia.
The Johns Hopkins International Injury Research Unit (JH-IIRU) is committed to reducing the burden of child injuries around the world. In June 2015, JH-IIRU launched the Child Injury Project in Ethiopia funded through HRCI by USAID. The main objective of this project is to gain a better understanding of the burden of injuries and the underlying risk factors, as well as to propose immediate actions to confront the burden.
Initial literature reviews were conducted and draft reports on the burden of child injury and a policy analysis on child injuries were drafted. In December 2015, JH-IIRU team members including assistant scientists Qingfeng Li and, Kunle Alonge, along with USAID senior research advisor, Collene Lawhorn, traveled to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia to conduct site visits and attend collaborators’ meetings.
While there, meetings and interviews were conducted with: the child health team at the USAID mission in Addis Ababa, administrators from St. Paul Hospital, representatives from the Ethiopian Pediatrics Society, academics at Addis Ababa University, members of the Central Agency of Statistics and representatives from the Ministry of Health. During the meetings, the team revised two reports: The burden of child injuries report and a policy situation report. The researchers plan to develop these reports into two journal articles. In addition, they identified a network of potential stakeholders for advancing child injury work and developed a concept note for the upcoming stakeholders’ meeting. JH-IIRU is coordinating with USAID HQ/Addis mission and a network of stakeholders to co-convene a consultative meeting of in-country stakeholders and other leading international and local institutions working on injuries with relevant partners.
Members from the JH-IIRU and USAID will be returning to Addis Ababa to facilitate the child injury partners meeting, present the situation studies on the burden of child injuries, build a consensus with the Ministry of Health on the outcomes/deliverables of the meeting and prepare for a large-scale stakeholders’ meeting.
In collaboration with the government of Ethiopia, USAID, NGOs, international and local academic institutions and other in-country stakeholders and partners, JH-IIRU will develop a proposal for the implementation of a child injury prevention package in Ethiopia.